SCOTT CAMAZINE / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY SCOTT CAMAZINE / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Pulmonary emphysema. False-colour X-ray of the chest of an 83 year old male, showing chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) consisting of emphysema and fibrosis of the lungs. This colour enhanced X-ray shows the extent of lung fibrosis (yellow) and emphysema (red). Fibrosis is a growth of fibrous scar tissue caused by infection or inflammation. Emphysema is a disease in which the alveoli (air sacs) in the lungs become damaged; the alveolar spaces become enlarged with varying degrees of destruction of the alveolar walls. This causes shortness of breath and reduces gas exchange. As the disease progresses, oxygen may be required. Emphysema has no known cure.
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